There’s no doubt, crime, especially brazen daylight crimes, are surging across the country, with oftentimes women and children being the intended and unintended victims.
In Monroe, North Carolina, a 13-year-old girl was shot and killed while she sat at a picnic table with other children. Police have not revealed a motive, but apparently it was a drive-by shooting. No other children were injured in the attack. Four men have been arrested in connection with her death.
There was another shooting in the state last month, which killed 8-year-old Ah’Miyahh Howell and injured a 7-year-old boy.
The situation is far worse in big cities, especially New York City.
Burmese immigrant Than Htwe remains in a coma after a man’s brazen attempt to steal her son’s backpack midmorning resulted in her and her son tumbling down the stairs. She suffered a severe brain injury. The family announced on July 26 that they are making arrangements to donate her organs.
As a recent immigrant from war-torn and autocratic Burma, also known as Myanmar, Than Htwe’s move to the United States was surely done in part to avoid violence and be closer to her family. Sadly, that didn’t happen. Her attacker remains on the loose.
“After hearing this about a mother who was kind hearted and respectful. Who was willing to move to a new country to give her one and only child a better life, really saddens us,” a GoFundMe post reads. “All of us are heartbroken and shocked by how the events have turned out.”
In the city that never sleeps, a group of adults attacked and beat a 61-year-old woman in order to steal her walker and $22 in cash and credit cards. The victim was taken to the hospital and police remain on the hunt for the four involved in the attack, which was made up of mostly women.
A NYC firefighter recently found himself surrounded and attacked by a mob of about 100 teens, who were yelling “fight night” and hit the man with a bottle and physically assaulted him. Some even mentioned being “high.” The man was simply out for a walk with his dog, who was not hurt in the attack. Police are looking for three of the teens that were seen in the assault.
In New York City, felony assaults are up 5.9% compared to last year, with 11,550 so far this year compared to 10,906 last year. Misdemeanor assault is also up by 10.7% for the week of July 12 to July 18.
There’s also the rather bold and sometimes shameless shoplifting that has been happening, usually in California, where the punishment for such a crime has been rendered pretty much meaningless.
In a video posted to social media, two men can be seen walking out of a TJ Maxx with arms full of clothes without a care in the world. Retail associates are told not to physically confront shoplifters, but these criminals also know that even if they’re caught, they’ll merely get a slap on the wrist so they are no longer concerned about criminal consequences.
This drastic increase in crime is partially attributed to the defund the police movement that began last summer and the decision by some cities and states to minimize prison times for such crimes, especially shoplifting.
While the defund the police effort gained media attention, the general public is “much more worried about public safety than about police misconduct,” according to a new USA TODAY/Suffolk University/Detroit Free Press Poll focusing on Detroit.
Per the report, “By an overwhelming 9-1, they would feel safer with more cops on the street, not fewer. Though one-third complain that Detroit police use force when it isn’t necessary – and Black men report high rates of racial profiling – those surveyed reject by 3-1 the slogan of some progressives to ‘defund the police.’”
But is it almost too little too late?
Other cities across the country are seeing the same spike in violent crime, with this year likely to become the deadliest to date when it comes to gun violence.
As just a comparison, the Gun Violence Achieve is reporting 11,562 incidents of homicide/murder/unintentional/defensive gun use (DGU) so far this year. In 2019, the latest review that they have, there were 15,208 deaths for the whole year. If the violence continues, 2021 can easily surpass 2019.
Injuries are already at 22,999 so far this year, compared to 29,501 for the whole of 2019.
Crime, especially violence crime, can have a deep impact on families. These deaths and injuries not only impact those who were the direct victims, but family members, friends and even acquaintances. For children, this would be incredibly difficult to process, especially if they lost a friend to a random bullet.
There are no easy answers, but as Christians we are called to pray for our fellow countrymen and our country. So, for the rest of this summer, consider lifting up those that have been impacted by violence and gun violence, and pray that hardened hearts would soften.
Photo from Shutterstock